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Mate ChoiceThe Evolution of Sexual Decision Making from Microbes to Humans$
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Gil G. Rosenthal

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691150673

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691150673.001.0001

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Beyond the Periphery

Beyond the Periphery

Perception, Cognition, and Multivariate Preferences

(p.91) Chapter 4 Beyond the Periphery
Mate Choice

Gil G. Rosenthal

Princeton University Press

Mate choice involves both the processing of complex information within sensory modalities, and the integration of information across modalities. This chapter discusses behavioral and evolutionary-genetic studies of chooser preferences for multiple courter traits in the light of the psychological literature on multimodal and multitrait perception. It expands on three general points. First, choosers attend to many different aspects of courter phenotypes, especially when we hold all else constant. Second, manipulating more than one variable shows that preferences interact non-additively; in other words, the attractiveness of one trait is dependent on another trait. Third, chooser preferences and courter traits do not map on to each other neatly in multivariate space.

Keywords:   mate choice, modalities, perceptual integration, categorical perception

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